Russia Vetoes Anti-Iran Resolution at UN

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Iran's mission to the United Nations charged that the United States and Britain had pushed an "unwarranted draft resolution" to advance an anti-Iran political agenda.

The UN Security Council resolution, in which Iran has been named as an accomplice to the missile strikes of Yemeni rebels against Saudi Arabia, has been blocked by Russian Federation, the news agencies reported.

Iran, along leading global human rights organizations, has called for an immediate end to the sales of arms by Washington, London and other Europeans to Saudi Arabia and other aggressors, who are killing innocent Yemeni people on a daily basis.

Since 2015, Shi'ite Huthi rebels backed by Iran have been battling Yemen's government, which has been supported by Saudi Arabia.

Eleven members of the UN Security Council voted in favor of the draft resolution, two countries abstained, while Russian Federation and Bolivia voted against.

Iran "categorically rejects allegations regarding arms transfer to Yemen", said a statement from the mission that described the draft resolution as an attempt to "distract" the world's attention from the "catastrophic humanitarian situation" in Yemen.

The experts examined missile remnants fired into Saudi Arabia by the Houthis previous year and said many "are consistent with those of the Iranian designed and manufactured Qiam-1 missile".

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Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said he opposed the draft, saying it should be about renewing the work of experts monitoring sanctions against Yemen rather than denouncing Iran.

The draft resolution, backed by France and the United States, called for unspecified measures in response to the UN report about Iran's alleged role in Yemen, stressing that the UNSC will take "additional measures to address these violations", and that "any activity related to the use of ballistic missiles in Yemen" is a criteria for sanctions.

"If Russia is going to continue to cover for Iran then the US and our partners need to take action on our own".

The 15-member council, however, did unanimously adopt a Russian-proposed resolution that did not mention Iran and that extended a targeted sanctions regime related to Yemen's civil war.

Yemen, the Arab world's most impoverished country with a population of 26 million, plunged into war in 2014 after the Houthis took over the capital Sanaa and forced the internationally recognized government to flee and seek support from neighboring Gulf countries.

The US immediately lashed out at Moscow for its veto, blaming Russian Federation for shielding a "terrorist-sponsoring" Iran. While the panel accused Iran of flaunting the embargo by "failing to take the necessary measures to prevent the direct or indirect supply", it fell short of identifying the supplier of the weapons. Millions of people are on the brink of starvation and more than 22 million - nearly the entire population - are in need, according to humanitarian agencies.

"In spite of a mountain of credible, independent evidence showing Iran violated the Yemen arms embargo, resulting in a series of attacks on civilian targets, Russian Federation prevented accountability and endangered the entire region".